My free Amazon Web Services account expired. It was like being cut off from a drug, all that power, all those services… Then I started getting billed!!!
So it was back to my own devices. After having access to so much power, I decided to up my game a bit. I already had business class FiOS with 5 static IP address that I had previously used to hosts my projects. So it was time to upgrade the Stormes Cloud.
I host my home servers at the top of our bedroom closet. I have had as many a three dedicated servers in the top of our closet in the past, and building a new infrastructure would be fun. This time I wanted to add some thing that I could not do at AWS MythTV. MythTV is a server that can capture digital TV broadcasts. I had an old AMD 3 core desktop and a couple of old tuner cards. Now I capture Star Trek reruns, local news and any prime time ABC, CBS, NBC and WB broadcasts. Cost, existing equipment + time, fun factor high.
Next was this blog. Getting the existing copy of this blog out of AWS was more work than it should have been. Had some issues rebuilding the DB. But as you are reading this, obviously I got that back online. With some new encryption courtesy of letsencrypt.org. Cost, time and expertise, and a small donation to LetsEncrypt.
Now for that cloud drive experience, owncloud.org for the win. Owncloud is a server app that provides cloud drive services to Android, Windows and Mac. Any other system can use a browser. This lets me use my NAS servers as cloud drives and with LetsEncrypt, my data is reasonably secure. Cost, time and expertise.
The cost of all these new services is trivial. I would have to have the internet service regardless of hosting these services or not, so that cost is a wash. Most of the hardware is just old outdated stuff most people have laying around. That leaves skill and expertise. The skills I sharpened implementing my new cloud infrastructure are priceless. These are the skills that have served me well, and helped buy our house, cars and keep us fed.
Building out your own server is not that hard. If you have an internet connection, you too can build out your own cloud. Service like http://www.noip.com/ can help you get started. The knoldge you gain can help drive your IT career.